Hands-on Gear Review

thinkbaby The Sippy Cup Stage C Review

thinkbaby transition sippy
Price:   $8.50 List | $8.49 at Amazon
Pros:  Good leak scores, nice design, easy to clean
Cons:  Difficult drinking
Bottom line:  High-scoring with a nod to eco-health, but difficult drinking
Editors' Rating:   
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Manufacturer Age Recommendation:  9 months to 2 years (Stage C)
Available Capacities (ounces):  9 oz
Empty Weight (ounces):  3.1 oz
Manufacturer:   thinkbaby

The Skinny

Thinkbaby is a refreshing plastic cup maker that seems to be putting babies first, and their materials second. This cup scored in the top 5 out of 14 cups we tested in this category. It scored well for leaks and ease of cleaning, as well as high for grip, and around average for weight. This cup could have been a real contender if it has just been easier to drink from, or had been made of something other than plastic; both of which would have given it the much needed point bump to break into the top three. For those reasons it is not a cup we would necessarily rave and recommend, but we wouldn't say we hated it either. On a positive note, it was nice to see a company website address the reality behind plastics, and what they are trying to do to give parents peace of mind.


RELATED REVIEW: The Best Transition Sippy Cup Review


Our Analysis and Test Results

Review by:
Juliet Spurrier, MD & Wendy Schmitz

Last Updated:
Tuesday
March 4, 2014

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This transition sippy cup is a plastic cup made by thinkbaby. It has a two handle design, interchangeable mouthpieces/nipples, and a spout made of soft silicone for use of transition, plus it is designed to be gentle on gums. The cup is made with BPA-free plastics, as well as without many other commonly known causes of endocrine disrupting chemicals. The makers have given much thought, and attention to detail, when it comes to making the safer plastic cup. This cup does not come in very many different colors, and there are no designs, or characters to choose from. The cup can be found in some stores and widely available online. The company offers a website that details the materials they use, those they don't, and why.

Performance Comparison


This photo shows a variety of transition sippy cups; note that Pura Kiki (pink sippy on right) is pictured here with silicone nipple. For transitioning  either a softer Pura Original Spout or firmer blue XL Sipper Spout can is substituted.
This photo shows a variety of transition sippy cups; note that Pura Kiki (pink sippy on right) is pictured here with silicone nipple. For transitioning, either a softer Pura Original Spout or firmer blue XL Sipper Spout can is substituted.

Likes


We liked the slender design and contoured two handle system of this cup. The longer narrow design was fairly uncommon in the transition sippy cups, but it seemed to be a style that the in-house testers enjoyed. The cup was fairly easy to hold, even if it was a little on the heavy side.
thinkbaby was easy to clean and assemble
thinkbaby was easy to clean and assemble
This cup also did well in the ease of cleaning metric. It was easy to take apart and assemble, with few parts that were intuitive to arrange. It did not require any special tools, outside of the basic bottle brush, to keep it properly clean. The soft silicone spout only required some gentle massaging to remove residue, and the parts cleaned up well in soap warm water, which we prefer over the dishwasher.

We liked the soft, flexible shape of the silicone spout, but the low ease of sucking score made this sort of a moot point. What looked like something that would work well, failed to execute well in our tests, with real people trying to drink from the spout.

This cup also did well in the leak department. Not only did it pass with flying colors with 10 of 10 in all tests for this metric, but it also came with a detachable lid to keep the spout clean, and further help to prevent leaks. While caps are easy to lose, it was a nice thought for keeping the mouthpiece cleaner.

Dislikes


There wasn't a whole lot to dislike about this cup. It was a slightly heavier than some of the other cups we tested, costing it a few points in the end. It also had a drinking spout that was darn near impossible for our testers to drink from. It scored only 1 of 10 for ease of sucking, and as you might have guessed babies won't use what doesn't work easily. The hard to work valve also cost it points for being a cup that doesn't align very closely with the American Dental Association's preference of using a no valve cup. The extra required sucking effort may disrupt oral health if the cup is used over a long period of time.

While the thinkbaby cup was longer than most of the transition cups we tested  babies didn't seem to have any trouble using it
While the thinkbaby cup was longer than most of the transition cups we tested, babies didn't seem to have any trouble using it
This cup also lost points for being made of plastic. The eco-health score would have been higher if it had been a steel or glass cup, given the general inert qualities of those materials, and the possibility that some plastics may leach chemicals into their body contents, especially after being exposed to heat. This company does offer a stainless steel variety of cup, and we wonder if we had tested it, if it would have given enough points to thinkbaby to help it break out of fifth place, and possibly vie for awards.

While we didn't like that the cup was made of plastic, the company has gone above and beyond any other company, or cup manufacturer included in our tests, of helping parents understand plastic risk, health issues, and possible plastic types than can be harmful. While their website may not be all inclusive, it was the only one of its kind that we found, out of the plastic cups we used in our tests. While all of the cups were BPA-free, this company has gone several steps further to ensure their plastic is on the safer side, and offered some transparency on their chemical policy. While there is still no real scientific evidence of what they are using, or its relative safety, we do love they are making an effort where most other brands seem not to be.

Conclusion


While we loved the better than average disclosure on this company website, and their thoughtful attention to plastic chemicals, we just couldn't get excited about a cup that is difficult to drink from. This cup did so well in many of our metrics, scoring well in ease of cleaning, and leakage, it was hard not to root for it as a winner. However, it scored poorly for ease of sucking, it was heavier than many of the other plastic cups in our tests, and it did not do well in eco-health. This cup could have done better in our tests if the spout was just more user friendly. If a redesign of the spout occurs, this cup might just be able to give some of the award winners a run for their money. So while there was much to like, it just failed in our tests in the key metric of being easy to use, meaning babies might grow frustrated.

This company also offers a stainless steel sippy, that was not included in our tests, for just a few dollars more. So if you just love this cup, or your child has no difficulty with the spout, but you are looking for a possibly healthier alternative, we think it might be worth a look see at the steel cup.
Juliet Spurrier, MD & Wendy Schmitz

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Most recent review: March 4, 2014
Summary of All Ratings

BabyGearLab Editors' Rating:  
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 (4.0)
Average Customer Rating:  
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